A man has been jailed for six and a half years after being found guilty of buying £25,000 worth of vehicles from a car dealership using stolen cheques.
Raza Rafiq, 35 from Walsall, visited a local car dealership on three separate occasions and bought a Ford Focus, Vauxhall Insignia and a BMW 1 Series totalling more than £25,000 using cheques that he had stolen from robberies at Moorside Gardens, Walsall, and the Afro Caribbean Centre on Wolverhampton Street, Walsall, in July 2013. Having initially fled the UK to Pakistan, Mr Rafiq returned and went on trial at Wolverhampton Crown Court, where he received his jail sentence.
Car dealerships and garages will face a wide range of different theft attempts, from more cunning forms of fraud through to simple smash and grabs in the middle of the night. To protect against all of these it is essential that the business has a combined motor trade insurance policy that will offer financial cover to replace or repair any vehicles, parts or equipment on site should they be damaged or stolen, as well as providing building insurance should the premises itself be damaged by criminals.
According to the Birmingham Mail, Mr Rafiq quickly sold on the vehicles he had bought with the stolen cheques but police eventually caught up with him when one of the car dealerships reported they had been paid with a stolen cheque. He was traced through the insurance he had bought for the vehicles, for which he had used his own address, but he fled the country as the allegations surfaced.
He was located upon his return and subsequently tried and sent to jail.